Report: NBC cancels plans to film TV series in East Jerusalem
Published Monday 23/12/2013 (updated) 24/12/2013 10:48
Israeli riot police walk at Jerusalem's al-Aqsa mosque during clashes
with Palestinian demonstrators on March 8, 2013. (AFP/Ahmad Gharabli)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- The American media and entertainment company NBC has responded to Palestinian pressure by saying it will not shoot a new television series near the Old City of Jerusalem and in Palestinian neighborhoods as originally announced, Israeli media reported Monday.
After a Palestinian outcry against plans to film the show on illegally annexed land, NBC told the PLO delegation to the US that they in fact had never planned to film the series "DIG" in East Jerusalem, according to Haaretz.
"There was no plan made to film the series in the City of David National Park or in the village of Silwan, furthermore, location scouting and planning will not begin until February 2014, and any decisions regarding possible production sites will be made with respect for all concerned parties," NBC was quoted as saying.
But an earlier NBC press release said that "the project would be shot in the City of David and present the exciting history of the Old City."
The upcoming drama 'DIG' is an action-adventure series set to be filmed entirely in Jerusalem. It was developed by Keshet Media Group, an Israeli media company, and will consist of six episodes due to be aired in 2014.
The show was also to be shot in the Silwan neighborhood of annexed East Jerusalem.
Earlier in December, PLO official Hanan Ashrawi told Ma'an: "Such a production will legitimize the annexation of Jerusalem and the destruction of the authenticity and character of the occupied city."
"Any business or organization that deals with Israel in occupied Palestine is in flagrant breach of international law, conventions, and consensus, respectively," Ashrawi said.
"The choice to film the series in Palestinian neighborhoods in Jerusalem is designed to endorse the occupation and the bitter reality experienced by Palestinian Jerusalemites."
East Jerusalem, including the historic Old City, was occupied by Israeli forces in 1967 and later annexed in a move not recognized by the international community.